Undressed for the occasion

Undressed for the occasion

By Cynthia Retamozo

As the thermometer hovered around 45 degrees, about 250 shivering students stood at the Speare Star, clad only in their undergarments, warming up for the first annual Underwear Run through campus.

“The run was liberating,” said Ian Doyle, a middler computer science and physics major. “My roommates were doing it and asked me to carry their clothes, but then once we got here, my friend urged me to run and so I did it.”

Wibby said his intent for this event was not to accomplish any noble causes, but only to give students the opportunity to come together for one night of 20-something debauchery.

“I hope to get world peace out of this,” Wibby said with sarcasm. “No, I just want students to have fun and enjoy themselves.”

About 9:50 p.m., students began filling the Speare Star still fully clothed, but eagerly anticipating what was about to unfold.

When 10 p.m. rolled around, students stripped down to their undergarments, and chanted “Underwear!” while quickly snapping photos of each other.

Some students wore accessories like army helmets, ties and backpacks to go along with their underwear. One student donned a full chicken costume with white briefs stretched over his pelvic area.

While most male students wore boxers, some opted to show off their more feminine side, and squeezed into bras and thongs.

Emily Chase, a sophomore nursing major, said she was glad to be participating.

“Not a lot of this school spirit happens,” Chase said, as others shouted and cheered. “And this is a fun activity.”

At 10:05 p.m., the participants took off. The course was put together by Ryan Miling, a freshman computer science and mathematics major.

The students headed east and ran south toward Opera Place and St. Stephen Street. They crossed Huntington Avenue into Centennial Commons, and then crossed Leon Street and passed West Village G and H. The momentum continued as they ran down Huntington Avenue, where several cars slowed and honked their horns.

NUPD eventually took notice, and began to surround the area to ensure the safety of the participants. Finally, the students turned left onto Forsyth Street and returned to Speare.

Afterward, the students remained at the Star, taking pictures and chanting, “Let’s go Huskies! Let’s go!” A second lap soon commenced, but those who participated took a different route to avoid the police: the Christian Science Center, Symphony Hall and back to Speare.

“This right here was Northeastern coming together for a common cause,” said Josh Boss, a freshman music industry major. “Granted it was running in our underwear in 40-degree weather, but it was awesome.”

But the night wasn’t without its share of mishaps. One student fell and slammed his face into the concrete, smearing it with blood. Sophomore physical therapy major Mike McCurry climbed onto the trunk of a moving NUPD car. When he tried to run away, a police officer tackled him to the ground and put him in handcuffs.

“Seeing me getting bodyslammed was probably the better part of the night for [the other students],” said McCurry, who said he was dared by his friends to jump onto the squad car. He will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution (OSCCR).

The run was organized by Story Wibby, a sophomore mechanical and biological engineering major. Wibby came up with the idea over the summer when his friend, sophomore computer engineering major Travis Welsberger, suggested giving students the opportunity to run half-naked around the campus.

A few weeks ago, Wibby created a Facebook group to spread the word. As the message reached students, the number of participants grew, garnering almost 400 confirmed guests, according to the group’s list.

Despite the disruptions, the spirit remained high and students agreed the night was a success. Many are looking forward to repeating the run next year.

“I hope it becomes a big event so that it continues,” said Keelan Maguire, a sophomore athletic training major. “It’s a great way to make new naked friends and naked memories.”

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